President Barack Obama, wrote Kuna.net, spoke on Tuesday with Egyptian President Abdelfattah Al-Sisi regarding their military assistance relationship and regional developments, including in Libya and Yemen.
Obama informed Al-Sisi that he will lift executive hold that have been in place since October 2013 on the delivery of F-16 aircraft, Harpoon missiles, and M1A1 tank kits, indicated a White House statement on their phone call.
Obama advised the he will continue to request an annual USD 1.3 billion in military assistance for Egypt. Including plans for the 2018 fiscal when the US will channel security assistance for Egypt into “counterterrorism, border security, Sinai security, and maritime security – and for sustainment of weapons systems already in Egypt’s arsenal,” affirmed the statement.
The President noted that, “these and other steps will help refine our military assistance relationship so that it is better positioned to address the shared challenges to U.S. and Egyptian interests in an unstable region, consistent with the longstanding strategic partnership between our two countries.”
Obama finally reiterated the US concern about, ” Egypt’s continued imprisonment of non-violent activists and mass trials. He encouraged increased respect for freedom of speech and assembly and emphasized that these issues remain a focus for the United States.” The leaders agreed to stay in contact in the weeks ahead.